What is Bikram and Absolute Hot 50 yoga?
Bikram yoga is a set sequence of 26 hatha yoga postures and 2 breathing exercises developed in the 1970’s by Bikram Choudhury. The sequence is designed to systematically work through all of the muscles of the body to help strengthen and stretch. The sequence is sometimes also referred to as Hot 26 or Original Hot Yoga.
Absolute Hot 50 is an expansion of this practice, developed by Lucas Rockwood in the mid 2000’s. Using the Bikram sequence as the base, this practice is made up of a set sequence of 50 postures with additional focus on core strength and stability, as well as hip opening postures.
In both sequences the postures are practiced in the same order every class.
Why is the studio heated?
The safe environment of a heated room allows the muscles, ligaments and joints to stretch deep without causing injury (also aids the healing of existing injuries). It detoxifies the body by opening the skins pores to let out the toxins in sweat; thins the blood to clear the circulatory system; and increases the heart rate for a great cardiovascular workout.
Do I have to be flexible?
No, you do not need to be flexible to practice yoga. As you practice, the muscles of your body will be gently stretching and over time you will notice your flexibility increasing, as well as your strength. The amount of improvement depends on your frequency of practice, your effort during practice and your own body’s capabilities.
I have never tried yoga and/or I am out of shape. Is Hot Yoga for me?
Hot Yoga is designed to meet your level of ability and fitness. In each class you will find a range of students; from beginners to advanced practitioners. You will see people of all ages, sizes, shapes and abilities.
How often should I be practicing?
When you first start Hot Yoga, we recommend a daily practice so your body can adjust to the heat and learn to perform each posture correctly. Keen Hot Yoga practitioners attend class 3 – 5 times a week.
What should I bring to my first class?
You do not need much for a class. You will want your yoga clothes, a towel large enough to cover the mat during class (If you do not have one these can be rented from the front desk), and a bottle of water to sip during class.
Do you have changing rooms, showers and locker facilities?
We are currently working to upgrade our facilities to include showers and separate changing areas.
We do have lockers available for you to use for your personal belongings during class.
What should I wear to class?
You will need to wear clothing that is close-fitting, breathable and lightweight. Avoid baggy clothing. We recommend athletic wear such as a sports top/sports bra and shorts or fitting yoga pants for women, and shorts or swim trunks for men.
How long is the class?
Our Hot 26 and Hot 50 classes are 90 Minutes.
Express classes are 60 minutes.
Does Hot Yoga provide a cardiovascular workout?
With the combination of the heat and the postures, your heart rate will increase during class. This will result in a challenging cardiovascular workout while testing your endurance, strength and flexibility. As with other forms of cardiovascular workout exercise, regular practice will aid weight loss and burn body fat, as well as developing muscle tone, strength and stamina.
Can Hot Yoga help my sports injury?
Hot Yoga has shown the ability to improve or heal a variety of sports injuries. From bad back, chronic knee problems to tennis elbow. However, Hot Yoga Newcastle teachers are not medically trained and we strongly advise that if you have any sort of injury please consult your doctor to and advise your teacher prior to your class.
Can I still practice Hot Yoga if I have a chronic health problem?
Regular practice has been known to reduce many symptoms of chronic ailments and diseases including back and joint problems, diabetes, asthma, arthritis, sleep disorders, digestive problems, tendonitis, skin conditions, and others. However, Hot Yoga Newcastle teachers are not medically trained and we advise if you have any sort of health conditions that you consult your doctor first and advise your teacher prior to your class.
I feel nauseous and dizzy while I’m practicing. Is this normal?
If you begin to feel ill, dizzy or faint, sit down on your mat and take a moment, breathing in and out through your nose. Sip water and just rest. The feeling is normal and will pass. Your body is adjusting to the heat, and it can take a few classes to adapt. You can help lessen this feeling by making sure that you are adequately hydrated before your class.
What if I have a heat condition?
We advise that any person with a heart condition wishing to practice Hot Yoga consults with their doctor as to whether Hot Yoga is a suitable form of exercise for you. We will need a doctor’s note for confirmation that you are well enough to participate, before your first class.
Can I still practice if I am pregnant?
During the delicate and critical time of your first trimester we ask you to refrain from practising Hot Yoga. If you are pregnant and have never practised Hot Yoga before, but are interested in practicing yoga we advise finding a prenatal yoga class. You can start to attend regular Hot Yoga classes about eight weeks after the birth of your child, as long as you post-natal clearance.
If you have had a regular Hot Yoga practice of no less than a year before becoming pregnant, we advise you to talk to your doctor and a senior teacher after your first trimester about attending regular classes. If you have had practice of any less than this we advise you to join a gentle or pre-natal yoga class. You can return to Hot Yoga classes about eight weeks after the birth of your child, as long as you have post-natal clearance.
What if I have high blood pressure?
As we are not medical professionals, we would recommend consulting with your doctor before practicing Hot Yoga. If he/she feels you are ok to practice please inform your teacher before practicing. Never practice alone or without the aid of a certified teacher. Don’t push too hard initially and use your common sense.
Use caution in the following postures until the blood pressure normalises:
- Half Moon, backward bend
- Standing Bow Pulling
- Balancing Stick
- Third part of Locust (both legs)
- Full Locust
- Floor Bow
For your first few classes you will only want to hold these postures for around 5 seconds, building up to 10 seconds are a couple of weeks of consistent practice. Make sure that you rest in between postures, trying to breathe normally (in and out through the nose) throughout the class.
What if I have asthma?
Hot Yoga will be good for you in several ways:
- The heat helps to relax the muscles and nerves.
- The intensity at which you practice is up to you.
- It will relax your mind and let go of any tension and negativity.
- If you feel you over exerting yourself please sit and rest.
- Your lungs and heart are strengthened, improving our lung function.
- In the long term you will be able to breathe easier and deeper.
- We ask all Asthma sufferers to keep their blue inhalers with them when they practice.
Is there anyone who cannot practice Hot Yoga?
Hot Yoga is suitable for all ages and levels of ability above 16 years old (the ability to sweat is essential to prevent overheating). Always check with your doctor if you have a concern and inform your teacher prior to the class. You may have to modify your class where you feel necessary if you have a problem; however, all students should feel challenged in class.
The only times that it is not recommended doing Hot Yoga is:
- If you are fasting
- If you have a fever
- If you are already doing an intense detoxification
- If you are pregnant (within the first trimester) and have less than 6 months of regular practice of Hot Yoga prior to becoming pregnant
- If you have had recent chemotherapy